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EU policies – Delivering for citizens: Digital transformation

28-06-2019

A digital revolution is transforming the world as we know it at unprecedented speed. Digital technologies have changed the way businesses operate, how people connect and exchange information, and how they interact with the public and private sectors. European businesses and citizens alike need an adequate policy framework and appropriate skills and infrastructures to capture the enormous value created by the digital economy and make a success of digital transformation. The European Union plays an ...

A digital revolution is transforming the world as we know it at unprecedented speed. Digital technologies have changed the way businesses operate, how people connect and exchange information, and how they interact with the public and private sectors. European businesses and citizens alike need an adequate policy framework and appropriate skills and infrastructures to capture the enormous value created by the digital economy and make a success of digital transformation. The European Union plays an active role in shaping the digital economy, with cross-policy initiatives that range from boosting investment to reforming EU laws, to non-legislative actions to improve Member States' coordination and exchange of best practices. The 2014-2019 parliamentary term has seen a number of initiatives in the areas of digitalisation of industry and public services, investment in digital infrastructure and services, research programmes, cybersecurity, e-commerce, copyright and data protection legislation. There is a growing awareness among EU citizens that digital technologies play an important role in their everyday lives. In a 2017 survey, two-thirds of Europeans said that these technologies have a positive impact on society, the economy and their own lives. However, they also bring new challenges. A majority of respondents felt that the EU, Member States' authorities and companies need to take action to address the impacts of these technologies. The European Union will increase its support for digital transformation in the coming years, as illustrated by the recent proposal for the Digital Europe programme (for 2021-2027) – which would be the first ever funding programme dedicated solely to supporting digital transformation in the EU. Further EU action will doubtless be needed, notably to increase infrastructure investment, boost innovation, foster digital champions and businesses digitalisation, reduce existing digital divides, remove remaining barriers in the digital single market and ensure an adequate legal and regulatory framework in the areas of advanced computing and data, artificial intelligence, and cybersecurity. The European Parliament, as co-legislator, is closely involved in shaping the policy framework that will help citizens and businesses fully exploit the potential of digital technologies. This is an update of an earlier briefing issued in advance of the 2019 European elections.

EU fertilising products

26-06-2019

Fertilising products are used to improve plant growth, mainly in agriculture, enabling higher crop yields. However, they are associated with some challenges as regards security of supply, the environment and health. Although the 2003 Fertilisers Regulation, which aimed at ensuring an internal market in fertilisers, has been effective, it mainly addresses mineral fertilisers and deters the introduction of new types of fertilisers. In March 2016, the Commission put forward a legislative proposal on ...

Fertilising products are used to improve plant growth, mainly in agriculture, enabling higher crop yields. However, they are associated with some challenges as regards security of supply, the environment and health. Although the 2003 Fertilisers Regulation, which aimed at ensuring an internal market in fertilisers, has been effective, it mainly addresses mineral fertilisers and deters the introduction of new types of fertilisers. In March 2016, the Commission put forward a legislative proposal on fertilising products, as announced in the circular economy action plan. The proposal modernises the conformity assessment and market surveillance in line with the ‘new legislative framework’ for product legislation, covers a wider range of fertilising products (including those manufactured from secondary raw materials), and sets limits for the presence of heavy metals and contaminants in fertilising products. After completion of the legislative procedure, the final act was signed on 5 June 2019. The regulation will apply in full from 16 July 2022. Fifth edition of a briefing originally drafted by Didier Bourguignon. The ‘EU Legislation in Progress’ briefings are updated at key stages throughout the legislative procedure. Please note this document has been designed for on-line viewing.

Key issues in the European Council

20-06-2019

The European Council Oversight Unit within the European Parliamentary Research Service (EPRS) monitors and analyses the activities, commitments and impact of the European Council, so as to maximize parliamentary understanding of the political dynamics of this important institution. This new EPRS publication, 'Key issues in the European Council', which will be updated quarterly to coincide with European Council meetings, aims to provide an overview of the institution’s activities on major EU issues ...

The European Council Oversight Unit within the European Parliamentary Research Service (EPRS) monitors and analyses the activities, commitments and impact of the European Council, so as to maximize parliamentary understanding of the political dynamics of this important institution. This new EPRS publication, 'Key issues in the European Council', which will be updated quarterly to coincide with European Council meetings, aims to provide an overview of the institution’s activities on major EU issues. It analyses nine policy areas, explaining the legal and political background and the main priorities and orientations defined by the European Council. It also assesses the results of European Council involvement to date and identifies future challenges in the various policy fields.

Copyright in the digital single market

14-06-2019

The European Commission presented a legislative package for the modernisation of the EU copyright rules, including a new directive on copyright in the digital single market, on 14 September 2016. Stakeholders and academics were strongly divided on the proposal. In February 2019, after more than two years of protracted negotiations, the co-legislators agreed on a new set of copyright rules, including two controversial provisions: 1) the creation of a new right that will allow press publishers to claim ...

The European Commission presented a legislative package for the modernisation of the EU copyright rules, including a new directive on copyright in the digital single market, on 14 September 2016. Stakeholders and academics were strongly divided on the proposal. In February 2019, after more than two years of protracted negotiations, the co-legislators agreed on a new set of copyright rules, including two controversial provisions: 1) the creation of a new right that will allow press publishers to claim remuneration for the online use of their publications (Article 15), and 2) the imposition of content monitoring measures on online platforms such as YouTube, which seeks to resolve the 'value gap' and help rights-holders to better monetise and control the distribution of their content online (Article 17). Furthermore, in addition to the mandatory exception for text and data mining for research purposes proposed by the Commission in its proposal, the co legislators agreed to enshrine in EU law another mandatory exception for general text and data mining (Article 4) in order to contribute to the development of data analytics and artificial intelligence. The European Parliament (in plenary) and the Council approved the compromise text in March 2019 and in April 2019 respectively. The directive was published on 15 May 2019 in the Official Journal of the European Union, and all Member States must transpose the new rules into their national law by June 2021. Fifth edition. The 'EU Legislation in Progress' briefings are updated at key stages throughout the legislative procedure.

European Council conclusions - A rolling check-list of commitments to date

14-06-2019

The role of the European Council – to 'provide the Union with the necessary impetus for its development' and to define its 'general political directions and priorities' – has evolved rapidly over the last decade. Since June 2014, the European Council Oversight Unit within the European Parliamentary Research Service (EPRS), the European Parliament's in-house research service and think tank, has been monitoring and analysing the European Council's delivery on commitments made in the conclusions of ...

The role of the European Council – to 'provide the Union with the necessary impetus for its development' and to define its 'general political directions and priorities' – has evolved rapidly over the last decade. Since June 2014, the European Council Oversight Unit within the European Parliamentary Research Service (EPRS), the European Parliament's in-house research service and think tank, has been monitoring and analysing the European Council's delivery on commitments made in the conclusions of its meetings. This overview of European Council conclusions is a new, updated and more comprehensive edition of the Rolling Check-List, which has been published regularly by the European Council Oversight Unit since 2014. It distinguishes between four types of European Council conclusions (commitments, reviews, endorsements and statements) and indicates the follow-up given to calls for action made by EU leaders. It also offers an introductory analysis of each policy area, highlighting the background to the main orientations given by the European Council, as well as the follow-up to them and the future challenges.

Identifying Optimal Policy Making and Legislation

15-05-2019

This Briefing forms part of a programme of research commissioned by the Internal Market and Consumer Protection Committee of the European Parliament (‘the IMCO Committee’). The research programme has the aim of updating the study undertaken for the IMCO Committee in 2014 on the “Contribution of the Internal Market and Consumer Protection to Growth”. The overall aim is to provide background information and advice for IMCO Committee members on the benefits of legislation established in the field ...

This Briefing forms part of a programme of research commissioned by the Internal Market and Consumer Protection Committee of the European Parliament (‘the IMCO Committee’). The research programme has the aim of updating the study undertaken for the IMCO Committee in 2014 on the “Contribution of the Internal Market and Consumer Protection to Growth”. The overall aim is to provide background information and advice for IMCO Committee members on the benefits of legislation established in the field of internal market and consumer protection and to reflect on priority measures and actions to be undertaken in this field. A workshop was held in Brussels on 10th July 2018, at which progress on this programme of research was presented and discussed. This Briefing focusses on tools for use in the identification of optimal policy making and their application in the area of the internal market and consumer protection. It uses the smart Single Market regulation concept – developed in earlier research for the IMCO Committee - to present the tools for optimal policy making and to assess the development of policy for the internal market and consumer protection. First, some context is provided with a discussion of the Europe 2020 targets, the “Contribution to growth” report and the Juncker Plan. Second, the smart Single Market regulation concept is introduced and finally policy developments and legislation for the internal market and consumer protection are discussed with recommendations for improvements to the policy-making process.

Externe auteur

Prof. Dr. Sion Jones

Workshop on “Strengthening Competitiveness of the Internal Market by Developing the EU Customs Union and its Governance”

15-05-2019

This report summarises the discussion that took place at the workshop on “Strengthening Competitiveness of the Internal Market by Developing the EU Customs Union and its Governance”. The Union Customs Code is a key element of the ongoing actions to modernise EU customs. With the aim of discussing the main challenges related to this topic and the recent proposal of the European Commission to postpone the deadline of 2020, the workshop was hosted by Ms Virginie Rozière, MEP. This document was prepared ...

This report summarises the discussion that took place at the workshop on “Strengthening Competitiveness of the Internal Market by Developing the EU Customs Union and its Governance”. The Union Customs Code is a key element of the ongoing actions to modernise EU customs. With the aim of discussing the main challenges related to this topic and the recent proposal of the European Commission to postpone the deadline of 2020, the workshop was hosted by Ms Virginie Rozière, MEP. This document was prepared by Policy Department A at the request of the Committee on Internal Market and Consumer Protection.

Contribution to Growth. Free Movement of Services and Freedom of Establishment. Delivering Improved Rights to European Citizens and Businesses

15-05-2019

This study discusses European legal policy to ensure freedom to provide services and freedom of establishment since 2009, ex-amines the market-opening effects of enacted acts and pro-posals, and identifies legislative challenges that the Union insti-tutions should address in the coming legislative period. It also addresses the specific Brexit-related issues for the freedom to provide services. This document was provided by Policy Department A, in collab-oration with IMCO Secretariat, at the request ...

This study discusses European legal policy to ensure freedom to provide services and freedom of establishment since 2009, ex-amines the market-opening effects of enacted acts and pro-posals, and identifies legislative challenges that the Union insti-tutions should address in the coming legislative period. It also addresses the specific Brexit-related issues for the freedom to provide services. This document was provided by Policy Department A, in collab-oration with IMCO Secretariat, at the request of the IMCO Committee.

Externe auteur

Prof. Dr. Friedmann KAINER

Contributing to Growth: European Digital Single - Market Delivering improved rights for citizens and businesses

15-05-2019

TThis study reviews all the rules adopted during the 8th Parliamentary legislature (2014-2019) to strengthen the Digital Single Market. On that basis, the report analyses the rights and obligations as well as the institutions and procedures created or improved in the main policy fields of the Digital Single Market (e-commerce and online platforms, e-government, data and AI, cybersecurity, consumer protection and electronic communications networks and services). Finally, the report identifies remaining ...

TThis study reviews all the rules adopted during the 8th Parliamentary legislature (2014-2019) to strengthen the Digital Single Market. On that basis, the report analyses the rights and obligations as well as the institutions and procedures created or improved in the main policy fields of the Digital Single Market (e-commerce and online platforms, e-government, data and AI, cybersecurity, consumer protection and electronic communications networks and services). Finally, the report identifies remaining gaps and possible actions for the forthcoming Parliament’s legislature. This study has been prepared for the IMCO Committee at the request of the Policy Department A of the European Parliament.

Externe auteur

Prof. Alexandre de STREEL, University of Namur and CERRE (Centre on Regulation in Europe) Christian HOCEPIED, University of Namur With the assistance of Michael LOGNOUL and Zorana ROSIC, University of Namurl

Contribution to Growth: Consumer Protection - Delivering improved rights for European citizens and businesses

15-05-2019

The following in-depth analysis explores economic benefits of policy achievements related to European Consumer Protection. Theoretical background indicates that measures aimed at improving consumer protection should provide mostly positive wider economic impact. Analysed studies related to EU legislation provide numerous evidence that it is the case indeed, however frequently lack quantification of effects. Some areas open for additional intervention are suggested in the study. This document was ...

The following in-depth analysis explores economic benefits of policy achievements related to European Consumer Protection. Theoretical background indicates that measures aimed at improving consumer protection should provide mostly positive wider economic impact. Analysed studies related to EU legislation provide numerous evidence that it is the case indeed, however frequently lack quantification of effects. Some areas open for additional intervention are suggested in the study. This document was prepared for Policy Department A on request of the Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection.

Externe auteur

Dr. M. Buwowski, T. Kaczor

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